Orthodox America

 The Cry of the New Martyrs – The ‘Light of Siberia’ 

    In last month's issue of "Orthodox America'' we reported the arrest of Priest Alexander Pivovarov in the Siberian town of Yeniseysk. Some biographical details have recently been supplied by the Russian religious writer Anatoli Levitin-Krasnov (now living in the West) from his personal knowledge of Fr. Alexander:

    "...The Pivovarov family were natives of the city of Tomsk, and both Alexander and his sister were given a deeply religious upbringing. The Church was the central factor in their lives. They grew up to be seeking individuals, great readers with broad interests. Alexander entered the seminary and his sister became a nun in the world' . [Fr.] Alexander's wife is a kindly, modest and intelligent woman. Alexander was ordained by the late Bishop Paul, head of the Novosibirsk diocese at the time.

     "Fr. Alexander rapidly became known and respected for his exceptional preaching and deep faith, and not only in his native Tomsk. People came to see him from all the surrounding areas and he was popularly referred to as the 'Light of Siberia: .... '

    "When Bishop Paul became a target for persecution, Fr. Alexander was also brought under pressure. As a result, he was sent to remote Yeniseysk in the Krasnoyarsk region. This, however, was deemed insufficient by the authorities and now he is in prison. The authorities are not accusing him of engaging in political activity--even the Siberian KGB lacks the gall to do so. Instead, they are charging him with...distributing religious literature (!). They probably think that he should be distributing the anti-religious Naukai Religiya ("Science and Religion'') journal instead..."

(Translated from "Russkaya Mysl" by Keston College)